Immerse yourself in the world of the West Highland Doxie, an irresistible combination of the sprightly West Highland White Terrier and the courageous Dachshund. This charismatic mixed breed creates a beautiful blend of the Westie’s amiable personality and the Dachshund’s tenacious spirit. Keep reading to discover more about the dog that’s known for its loyalty, playful spirit, and low-shedding coat.
White, tan, brown, multi-colored, black
Active families, allergy sufferers, multi-pet households
Loyal, affectionate, intelligent, easily trained, friendly, sociable with other pets
Born from two well-loved breeds, the West Highland Doxie is an interesting mix with an endearing personality. With the playfulness of a Westie and the courage of a Dachshund, this crossbreed is captivating in many ways. Its stunning array of colors, combined with an affable and spirited temperament, makes the West Highland Doxie a beloved choice for many dog enthusiasts.
West Highland Doxie Characteristics
West Highland Doxie Puppies
Welcoming a West Highland Doxie puppy into your home is like opening a Pandora’s box of joy. These puppies are brimming with energy and curiosity, always ready to discover new corners of their environment. They’re quite the entertainers with their playful antics and are quick learners, which can make training them both a joy and a challenge.
Finding a West Highland Doxie might require some patience, though. This adorable mix isn’t as commonplace as their parent breeds, the Westie and the Dachshund, so you might have to do a bit of detective work to find your perfect puppy. Check out breeders who have a passion for creating these unique bundles of joy or stay in touch with rescue organizations that might have the mix you’re looking for.
Don’t rush the process, though. It’s vitally important to make sure your new furry friend comes from a breeder who genuinely cares about their animals. They should prioritize the health and happiness of their pups over profit. So, ensure you find a breeder who’s responsible and has a track record of ethical breeding practices. This step is so important, it could mean the difference between years of joy with your new best friend or facing heart-wrenching health issues down the line.
Temperament & Intelligence of the West Highland Doxie
The West Highland Doxie is known for its loyalty and affection. This breed is incredibly attached to its family, and it’s not unusual for them to follow their favorite people from room to room. They’re friendly and generally get along well with other pets, especially if socialized early.
One of the hallmarks of this breed is its intelligence. They’re sharp, quick to learn, and often show a touch of that infamous Dachshund stubbornness, which can certainly make things interesting! Mental stimulation is as important as physical exercise for these dogs, and they love puzzle toys and games that challenge their mind.
Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪
Absolutely! West Highland Doxies often make excellent family dogs. These lovable furballs tend to get along brilliantly with kiddos, especially if they’ve grown up together. Blessed with a playful spirit and an affectionate heart, these dogs can become the best pals for your little ones. Their playful nature might even tire your kids out for you!
Nevertheless, it’s crucial to remember that, like any dog, West Highland Doxies should never be left unsupervised with very young children. Why? Well, kids can be unintentionally rough, and dogs might react unpredictably to being poked or prodded. This isn’t a reflection on the breed – it’s just good practice.
Always ensure that you, or another responsible adult, are present to supervise interactions between your child and the dog. That way, you can step in if playtime gets too rough or if either party becomes overwhelmed. That’s how you keep playdates fun and safe for everyone involved.
They’re also a good choice for active singles or couples, seniors, and those who enjoy an indoor companion that isn’t averse to outdoor adventures. Their size and overall hardy constitution make them adaptable to various living situations, from apartments to homes with spacious yards.
Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?
In general, the West Highland Doxie gets along well with other pets. Their West Highland Terrier heritage instills a friendly demeanor, and their Dachshund side provides a bold yet approachable spirit. Early socialization is vital to ensure a positive attitude toward other animals.
The breed can coexist with other dogs and even cats, especially if they grow up together. But remember, each dog is an individual, and their ability to get along with other pets may also depend on their personal experiences and training.
Things to Know When Owning a West Highland Doxie
Food & Diet Requirements 🦴
A West Highland Doxie requires a diet formulated for their size, age, and activity level. High-quality dry dog food is a popular choice. It’s crucial to ensure they’re getting a balanced diet full of the necessary nutrients.
Avoid overfeeding as both parent breeds are prone to obesity, which could lead to serious health issues such as diabetes or joint problems. Treats can be a good training aid, but remember to give them sparingly.
West Highland Doxies are lively dogs and need a decent amount of exercise. A couple of daily walks, combined with some playtime in the yard or at home, will help keep them fit and mentally stimulated. They love to play fetch and will enjoy puzzle toys that challenge them mentally. They need about an hour of exercise per day.
Training: Due to their intelligent nature, West Highland Doxies are generally easy to train. They respond well to positive reinforcement techniques such as treats, praises, and petting. Consistency is key, and training sessions should be kept short and fun to hold their attention.
Early socialization and puppy training classes are recommended. It’s essential to expose the West Highland Doxie to different people, pets, and environments so they grow up to be well-rounded dogs.
Remember, brushing your pup’s coat isn’t merely about maintaining its appearance. It’s a ritual that helps distribute natural oils through the fur, keeps skin healthy, and reduces any potential itchiness or skin irritation. Plus, it’s a wonderful bonding time for you both. Regular brushing—preferably several times a week—should be a part of your West Highland Doxie’s grooming routine. Invest in a good quality brush that can deal with their unique fur type without causing discomfort.
Baths, while not needed daily, should be given when your pooch gets particularly muddy or starts to develop a wet dog smell. Always use a gentle, dog-safe shampoo to protect their skin and coat. It’s not unusual for West Highland Doxies to have sensitive skin, thanks to their Westie lineage, so opt for hypoallergenic products when you can.
You can’t overlook the importance of regular nail trims. Their active lifestyle will naturally keep their nails somewhat in check, but if you hear their nails clicking on the floor, it’s time for a trim.
Don’t forget about those adorable ears, either! Regular checks and gentle cleanings can help prevent infections that dogs with floppy ears are prone to. Wiping them out with a vet-approved solution or a damp cloth can keep them clean and healthy.
Lastly, but equally important, is dental care. It’s often overlooked, but maintaining your dog’s oral health is critical. Brushing your West Highland Doxie’s teeth a few times a week can prevent tartar buildup and promote good dental health. Dog-friendly toothbrushes and toothpaste are available to make this task easier.
Health and Conditions 🏥
Male vs Female
The male West Highland Doxie tends to be slightly larger than the female, but otherwise, there are no significant differences in temperament or appearance between the sexes. The decision on the sex of the dog can be a personal preference and should be dependent on the dynamics of your household. It’s crucial to remember that, regardless of sex, each dog will have its unique personality and quirks.
3 Little-Known Facts About the West Highland Doxie
1. A Heart for the Hunt
While they’re all heart and cuddles at home, don’t forget that the West Highland Doxie comes from two breeds with strong hunting instincts. Their Dachshund ancestors were bred for hunting badgers, and the Westies were used for hunting rats and other small game. Don’t be surprised if your furry friend occasionally shows off their innate tracking abilities!
2. They Make Great Watchdogs
Don’t be fooled by their small size and friendly disposition; these dogs are always alert. If they notice something out of the ordinary, they won’t hesitate to sound the alarm. While they’re generally sociable, their keen senses make them excellent watchdogs for your home.
3. They’re Not Strong Swimmers
Despite their adventurous spirit, most West Highland Doxies are not the biggest fans of water. Dachshunds have a body structure not well-suited for swimming, and this trait is often passed onto their Westie mix offspring. Always supervise your West Highland Doxie around pools and large bodies of water.
The West Highland Doxie is a delightful mix of charm, energy, and loyalty. This breed is adaptable, making it suitable for a variety of home environments and lifestyles. Whether you’re a single, a couple, a family with kids, or a senior, the West Highland Doxie can make a wonderful, loving companion.
Yes, they have energy to burn, a mind of their own at times, and they require regular grooming, but the joy and companionship they bring are immeasurable. The experience of having a West Highland Doxie by your side is rewarding, full of affection, and dotted with moments of laughter at their entertaining antics.
Featured Image Credit: Left – rebeccaashworth, Shutterstock | Right – Hayden Patmore, Unsplash